CHENNAI: The city police on Wednesday arrested two people, including a 33-year-old woman, for kidnapping a class 10 girl from a private school in Nungambakkam. The victim, Fathima (name changed), is the daughter of a businessman from West Mambalam, and she had joined the school only recently, said the police.
"Fathima goes back home in a private van, and when she did not turn up on Wednesday, van driver, Ganesan, who waited for her at the school, alerted her parents as well as the school authorities. Around 2 pm, the girl's parents reached the school to meet the principal. Around that time, the father received a phone call from an anonymous number," said a senior police officer.
A woman who spoke from the other end allegedly told the man that his daughter was in her custody, and demanded Rs 10 lakh to release her. While the parents immediately alerted the police, the woman called the father again and agreed to release the girl for Rs 2 lakh.
She asked the father to leave the money at a hardware outlet at Kodambakkam. The girl’s father, accompanied by police, reached the outlet and handed over the money to the shop owner M Ijaz Ahmed (52).
"After Ijaz Ahmed confirmed to the woman over the phone that money had been received, she told the man to pick up his daughter from the entrance of a private hospital on 100-ft road in Vadapalani," said the police officer.
While the man rushed to the spot to rescue his daughter, Nungambakkam police picked up Ijaz Ahmed and secured the woman too within hours. Inquiries with the main accused, M Mohsina Parveen of Royapettah, revealed that she kidnapped the girl to settle a debt of Rs 5 lakh. Mohsina’s husband runs an eatery in Royapettah.
But, interestingly Mohsina's original target was not Fathima. It was her relative’s child, a Class 9 student in the same school, said the police. "Moshina visited the school wearing a burqa and after she learnt from the principal that the girl was absent, she revised her plan. Inside the school campus, she befriended Fathima claiming she was her mother’s friend. Moshina allegedly told Fathima that her parents had asked to pick her up from school," the police said.
"They boarded an autorickshaw and went to a mall in Aminjikarai, where Mohsina got her father's phone number and negotiated the deal. Later, she took the victim to another mall in Vadapalani and after she received a confirmation that money had been received, she left the victim near a hospital and escaped," they added.
Police arrested both Mohsina and Ijaz Ahmed and sent them to judicial remand on Wednesday night.
During an inquiry it came to light that Mohsina’s brother works at Ijaz Ahmed’s shop. It is unclear whether Ijaz was part of the kidnapping since Mohsina called him only after negotiating the deal with the victim's father.